Trust Services And Data Protection – Tools With A Promising Future For Healthcare Professionals And Their Patients

Fabrice Aresu, CEO of LuxTrust (Photo © LuxTrust)

LuxTrust is a digital trust player created by the Luxembourg State in 2005. It is a digital identity Certification Authority for the general public and companies, as well as a qualified trust service provider.

Committed to building trust in the digital world, the company enables a wide audience to integrate compliant solutions by combining innovation and customer experience. In the field of healthcare, LuxTrust continues to invest in the highest level of reliability and security while thinking about the uses of tomorrow.

Behind LuxTrust lies an ambitious project–to equip all Luxembourg citizens and border residents with a strong digital identity. A certified electronic passport, allowing them to carry out all public and citizen operations via an application or smart cards, in a totally secure manner.

“There are obvious advantages to pooling the authentication of different institutions and citizen services. These are simplicity, security and interoperability. We are approaching the concept of the smart city! LuxTrust makes it possible to identify oneself at the bank, to pay taxes and to consult one’s Shared Health Record (SHR) simply, without the need for a different login for each connection,” explains Jérôme Gauthier, Information Systems Security Manager at the Luxembourg e-Health Agency.

The e-Health Agency is a national agency responsible for facilitating the sharing and exchange of patient health data between professionals both nationally and across borders through the provision of services and the development of national policies. “We had two needs. First, to work on the authentication part of the doctor and the patient. We currently provide between 150 and 200 digital identities per year to Luxembourg healthcare professionals. On the patient side, an identity is assigned to each citizen as soon as he or she opens an eHealth account to access his or her PHR (Shared Health Record) or takes out a bank account. Then, in a second phase, we need to set up a reliable electronic signature tool for professional documents,” explains Hervé Barge, who has been CEO of the e-Health Agency since 2012.

Signing a discharge form remotely, digitising a patient file and sharing it within a Groupement Hospitalier de Territoire, working on supply chain management, invoicing or making claims: the company offers solutions for protecting, managing, generating and accessing data, and is thus working on building an automated and secure pathway for digital data exchange. “We offer various protections such as electronic seals, based on cryptographic mechanisms, which ensure the integrity of a biological analysis and prevent fraud. The document, often a PDF, is sealed and time-stamped for maximum security,” explains Fabrice Aresu, General Manager of LuxTrust.

The Luxembourg National Health Laboratory also collaborates with the company for the electronic signature of their reports and the management of sensitive IT access (VPN or email) for six of their departments. “The COVID certificate reports were simple PDFs that were very easy to modify. The same was true with medical reports sent externally. Today, thanks to the electronic signature, an organisation can quickly verify the integrity of a document,” explains Yannick Kirschhoffer, IT manager at the National Health Laboratory.

Automate and secure administrative processes in healthcare

From a practical point of view, LuxTrust’s solutions behave like real business software and interface with pre-existing tools. “Some customers already have their IT, others ask us to work directly with their software publisher. We can easily adapt, because our services are autonomous and can therefore be implemented quickly. Everything is automated so that the professional in the field does not have to alter his or her way of working at any time,” adds LuxTrust’s Managing Director. From the patient’s point of view, the company is aligned with the European Commission’s considerations with a very strict data management policy.

Inspired by initiatives such as Gaïa-X (a European trust label awarded to companies and institutions that respect data traceability and guarantee the possibility for citizens to reference their consents, editor’s note), LuxTrust offers the ability to withdraw or give consent at any time. “It is important to ensure that data is communicated conscientiously. The platform sends a request for consent as soon as the GP wishes to share information with another colleague,” explains Fabrice Aresu.

This fluidity of the pathway is still only an ideal for the company, as the computerisation of processes is still hampered by the partial adoption of digital medical records. “The fully digital pathway is not yet widespread today. It will take time, but it will come, we are inevitably moving towards it,” continues Hervé Barge. “The digital information flow is working well. Of the 640,000 residents in Luxembourg, we have 1,000,400 DSPs. This is equivalent to a CSP deployment of 150% with a rejection rate of only 0.19%,” continues Hervé Barge.

With more than 700,000 digital identities already generated and offices in Luxembourg, France, Monaco and Belgium, LuxTrust’s Public Key Infrastructure continues to expand. In a Europe where technology and political awareness continue to grow, hopefully in concert, the resources follow ambitious plans to revolutionise healthcare systems. “We will add services such as the electronic vaccination record and are creating a service kiosk like Mon Espace Santé in France. Each service integration will be a new step forward for us,” shares Hervé Barge of the e-Health Agency.

“Sensitive industries, such as healthcare and banking, will be the first to benefit from all technological advances. In the years to come, we will see a rather interesting upheaval in our habits and in the quality of our information processing, which is very encouraging,” concludes Fabrice Aresu.

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